My mission at the book store was to purchase a copy of a book I had recently borrowed from the library (review will come…eventually). Book stores are fascinating places with temptations beckoning all over. Seating myself on the handy bench, I proceeded to look at the new fiction. Pad in hand to write down interesting titles, my eyes were drawn to Garden Spells. No, I thought, I’m not into that type of stuff. Still, my eyes wouldn’t let go. It must be the garden in that title, my mind reasoned. Yet, my hand pulled it off the shelf and I opened it and began to read. Just a tiny bit, I told myself, enough to see if I like it, and then I’ll put it back.
And that, my friends, is how Sarah Addison Allen pulls you in. The book didn’t go back onto the shelf. No, it marched itself (practically) to the register where I found myself paying for it (and no discount…I paid full price…whatever has possessed me). Home we went, the book and I, where I sat on the couch with my feet comfortably under me (no comments) and dug in. Surely, I had other things to do. It didn’t matter. I was more interested in Claire Waverley and
I want a house to belong to, as Claire does, and a rather unique garden. Even more (I think), I want to write like Ms. Allen. Delicious and smooth, this book reminded me of an ice cream cone I couldn’t put down. I’m sure I made dinner (I don’t really remember), and the tv must have been on…all I know is that I was deep into the arrival of Claire’s sister Sydney and daughter Bay…and oh, the neighbor, Tyler. Sleep, I did do that, but the next morning, the book was back in my hand. Things all around me beckoned; it was a gorgeous day to be out in the garden. Still, I sat on the couch and devoured this book.
I knew it was coming to an end and part of me wanted to savor it, draw it out and not let it end, but I couldn’t help myself. I had to know. So, in a little more than 24 hours, I had completed the book. Big sigh. It was so good.
If you like small southern towns (come on now, who doesn’t?), small southern town ways and small southern town people…add a little dash of mysticism, a beloved garden and an endearing story of coming home…well, you’ve got a pretty perfect story. Hurry up and write more, Sarah Addison Allen, we’re out here waiting…